Today I want to talk about how easy it is to vs one famous through social networks. The first person I want to talk about is Justin Bieber. He became famous from you tube. When he was younger he would sing in competitions and his mom would record them and post them on you tube so friends and family can see his performance. His current manager actually found him on you tube so he reached out up Justin’s mom and the rest is history. The next person i want to talk about is #alexfromtarget. So he’s this little 16 year old cutie from Texas and he works at target. While he was ringing up a girl, she thought he was super cute apparently and took a picture of him (without him knowing) and posted it on twitter. Within his shift he gained over 700,000 followers on twitter and he was intived to The Ellen Degenerous Show. So crazy. It could be so much as posting your crazy antics online or working at target. With social media it has made becoming famous so much faster and easier because everyone is connected.
Since I currently do not have an Instagram, I was curious about it’s history and such so I decided to do some research on it! So it was launched back in October 2010 by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. By June 2012 they had approximately 100 million users! So crazy! You can post pictures and videos (15 seconds) and the site offers a ton of filters. On April 2012, Facebook actually bought Instagram and over that year it grew 23% were as Facebook only grew 3%. Instagram was the creator of the infamous ‘hashtag’ movement. Instead of just putting photo, using a hashtag to help discover similar pictures and people. Which is super cool actually. Basically Instagram is like twitter except you post tons of videos and pictures that embody your thoughts instead of your actual thoughts.
Did you know the due to social media sites we can learn more in one week then used to be possible in a lifetime. It’s true, on average most of us will gloss over an article that one of our friends has posted and usually we won’t read it but occasionally we will. Some of these articles like the IFLS channel on facebook will have interesting scientific facts or occasionally we will read the most brief paraphrased version of a biography about someone in the past. True we might not look at it as “learning” but in reality that’s what it is. We, on a regular basis get a basic idea of something that people spend their entire lives researching; by no means are we experts by reading these things but it does go to show just how quickly information is spread through websites like these.
If we look deeper into it however it does go into more depth. Wikipedia is considered social networking believe it or not. It’s a website based on the idea that experts of any field can add onto, it might not be considered school applicable but more often than not the information is actually correct on hundreds of thousands of topics. In the ten years this particular site has been up it has added more than three times the amount of information the encyclopedia Britannica has in the last two hundred years, it might not be peer reviewed for school but if you have ever looked through the information they have on their psychology sections and compared it to your class notes they really are not that far off.
Social networking truly does add to information at an increasingly expanding rate, it also help share things that would previously have been considered impossible. A good example of this in my opinion would be art. Today we can post a picture of something we created and it be viewed by hundreds of thousands of people in an hour. In the past people would have to physically have to come and view it and it would be unlikely to hit even a hundred people unless it was on display at an art exhibit. (I can say this in all fairness as pre social media rather than pre-internet because you would have to create a site for your artwork and you likely wouldn’t unless it was your career).
With this all expanding spider web of networks information can be sought or brought to individuals at an increasingly rapid rate, but there is a side effect to that. The population rather than taking to time to admire art or spending the time to learn and understand things now simply seeks the next cooler thing to compare with or just reverts to google. This leaves the population with a shorter attention span, and a more forgetful brain reliant on technology to function properly and this can be seen in groups of people on whomever is looking up something to show on their phone. On top of that although these sites can be magnificent at times for the same reason that Wikipedia can’t be used in school is that on there internet there are no real infringement rites, there isn’t really peer review so things can be faked or completely lied about and there is not method of knowing.
If you aren’t sure what Cos-play is, let me tell you: it is the practice of dressing up as a character from a movie, book, or video game, especially one from the Japanese genres of manga and anime. This culture, practically hidden from “norms” for years, boomed on to the scene of everyone’s Facebook newsfeed. Something that only people who actually are involved in the fun knew about, was shown to the rest of the world in all its glory when Facebook made it possible. Now, cos-players from around the WORLD are able to interact, share ideas, and even coordinate to dress as a group to conventions. Being a person who has many friends who do this, I always found it interesting how much work they put into these elaborate outfits, that are often times uncomfortable, and even, completely inappropriate for the weather. However, these avid fans aren’t going to let a little snow stop them! No, they go through the hours of make-up, hair, and sticking their outfits onto themselves to be able to show off their wonderful skills, and their love for whatever movie/book/ or video game! If you ever want to see what I’m talking about, how far this fandom really goes, or maybe even if you want to join along, Facebook has made it a wonderful time and place to be weird, abnormal, and just plain old amazing!
Social networks give a fangirl the power have having their fandom at the palm of their hands. Fan girls are obsessive female fans, usually of movies, comic books, or science fiction. Social networks that are most popular are Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or as fangirls would like to call them, Blogging sites. When it comes to social media, the network sends out the information or creates a blog that relates to the show, but the interaction we have as an audience with it is like television. Another thing that’s really popular with social networks is fanfiction. Fanfiction is fiction written by a fan of, and featuring characters from, a particular TV series, movie, etc. Fanfiction allows people to express their inner geek and to not be judged by it. Everyone that posts a fanfiction has their own personal way of seeing the world. So maybe we should all let our inner geek out. We should allow our mind to be shown and to be able to express how we feel and what we think. If everyone was to actually show what we really thought could we really be judged? Even though social networks have pushed us away within our community they have also managed to bring us closer together. Social networks have brought us closer by showing us who the really “us” is, because I mean who can really judge you for what you post or what you say when in reality it could be anyone pretending to be you. Tumblr is a type of social network in which one can basically post what they please. You get to reblog what you want and you can actually see how weird and random people can really be when they’re being themselves. Facebook is another social network or also most like to call the drama website. Facebook is were people post what they want and make it as blunt and cruel as possible. Everyone posts about how what they hate and who they hate. They post the rudest things which causes nothing but drama and so much gossip. A third social network is Twitter. Twitter is a site in which you can stalk anyone at anytime. You can see what people you follow post and anytime. The best part is that it is an okay thing to do, due to the fact that it is meant to just keep in touch with what’s new what’s hot and what’s not. Another very commonly known social network is Insatgram. A network where one posts nothing but pictures of what goes on in one’s day and well let’s face it in the beginning that social networks was nothing but posting pictures of food. So what is the real point of it? Honestly everyone has their own thoughts on what their into and what their not into. So use social networks as you please and forget about what anyone has to say about that social network.
My favorite social network right now is Facebook. Yes I know its very basic and whatever but I like it! I’ve probably had my Facebook for about 6 years, (omg crazy) and of course my friends, likes, have all evolved but overall its still the same concept and I like that. Its basically how Myspace used to be. I remember spending hours and hours and hours on Myspace trying to find the best song that fit the mood of my new profile HAHA! Thats hilarious to look back on. But my Facebook is great because I’m still easily connected to my old friends from high school and some of my old jobs. Also my friend is in south Africa for a semester and i get to be updated on her all the time too. I love seeing her post pictures of south Africa and she has monkeys on her school campus, which is so cool! I know that not everyone has had a positive experience with social networks but, for me, they’ve been pretty darn positive. I like the fact that my friends and family are so accessible when maybe they wouldn’t be otherwise.
Social networking has a vicarious affect on its users. This can have a very particular example when we talk about anonymity. I have to note this based on posts about 4chan and tumblr. Interestingly enough these sites can be a direct example from psychology that people are willing to be fairly evil (based on their personal moral grey areas) when they are considered anonymous and don’t believe that anything they do can be directly related back to them as a person. Now on tumblr this comes off as certain dark jokes or disturbing pictures, they happen to be on the light end of what I’m talking about. 4chan on the other hand is as my title suggests the scum of the internet, it is that dark area that has been connected to so many terrible things that both the FBI and news stations keep a constant eye on it. On 4chan the users do not have a profile, in fact most users don’t even have an IP address so it’s virtually impossible to ever correlate them to anything they post without vigilant effort. This sites true anonymity has led to many dark conversations, pictures and videos of illegal actions (leading from minor vandalism to capital punishment offenses). What started out as a general image forum eventually led up to a collective of generally disturbed individuals and integrated criminals through a hive mind. I will state right now that most of the “publicity” given to the site is ill-researched and as a generality not true. It did however have its moments, from creating protests against scientology around the world and a couple of anti security hacker groups that popped up (most popular being lulzsec). This site through its idea of not needing to share any information gave opportunity for these things to happen; however, not everything that happened was bad.
4chan is a melting pot of ideas, and generally it has gone through transitions based on the time period. For a website that’s been around for a little more than ten years it has had generations not too un-similar to how the generations differed from the early seventies to now. They went from meme based to civilized, to hacker, to meme based and now it’s just a mesh of finding out what it is. This is a particular website that in general a new populace of users come in and the old populace almost completely leave. It is true that there are and always will be terrible things associated with this site there are a couple good things. Unlike imgur in my previous post I don’t like much of what I see on 4chan, not by a long shot. Yet it has its golden moments, baww threads where people can express everything that has them down with no fear of judgment and generally some pretty good advice. Interesting and unique ideas that eventually end up in humor threads, and honestly most of the memes made before 2011 were created there. It is an interesting site it has heavy cons and some pros and yet even being off balanced the pros can make it worth it. (I’ll also not I’m not advocating for or against this site, if you’re curious on checking it out… do it from home its NSFW by any means.